Water Resources of the United States

PROJECT ALERT NOTICE (MO) Drought Activities Update

Date: Thu, 30 Aug 2012 13:57:51 EDT

Summary: The USGS continues to closely monitor the hydrologic drought conditions in the State of Missouri.

Event Information:

Hydrologic Conditions: Drought conditions continue throughout Missouri. As of August 28, the U.S. Drought Monitor shows 100 percent of the state experiencing severe drought, 97 percent experiencing extreme drought, and 35 percent experiencing exceptional drought.

Streamgages: Lowflow measurements continue to be made at streamgages with zero flows being observed at many locations. Since July 1, 73 lowflow discharge measurements have been made during non-routine field trips, approximately 140 measurements have been made during routine field trips, and an additional 40 measurements were made during a seepage run. With the prediction of heavy rain for Friday and Saturday, crews are out making lowflow measurements today.

Groundwater: From August 23 to August 29, water levels in 43 wells decreased to new period of record (POR) lows. However, 41 of these wells set their previous POR lows earlier in the month. Two new wells joined the list of wells setting new POR lows this summer. This brings the total count to 68 wells of the 163 Missouri monitoring wells that have set new POR low water levels since June 2012. Water levels in 20 of these wells have recovered from 1 to 24 feet since the well set the record low earlier in the summer. There are currently 34 wells that have not set POR low water levels this summer but are within 5 feet of doing so. Currently, the drought has had a greater effect on water levels in the shallow alluvial aquifers including the Missouri and Mississippi River alluvium and glacial drift aquifers in northern Missouri than in bedrock aquifer wells in the Ozark Plateaus aquifer system or Cambrian-Ordovician / Mississippian aquifers of northern Missouri.

Communications and outreach: Numerous data inquiries have been answered regarding the ongoing drought conditions. Several WSC staff have been interviewed by the media concerning low streamflows, decreasing groundwater levels and water-quality conditions. With the ongoing Isaac Event and the prediction of rain, the drought inquiries have decreased this week.

Sub-Region: Midwest; Region: Central United States

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